The Red Sox’ arbitration-free streak remains intact.
On the heels of Jacoby Ellsbury’s MVP-caliber season, the team announced it had reached a one-year, non-guaranteed contract Tuesday to avoid arbitration. CSNNE.com reports the deal is worth $8.05 million.
It gives the Red Sox outfielder a hefty raise from the $2.4 million that he earned during the 2011 season.
Ellsbury, 28, enjoyed a breakout campaign last year, setting career-highs with 46 doubles, 32 homers, 105 RBIs, 119 runs and 52 walks en route to finishing second — behind Detroit pitcher Justin Verlander — in the American League MVP voting.
A first-time All-Star in 2011, Ellsbury flourished in the leadoff spot for the Red Sox, hitting .321 and swiping 39 bases. With the performance, he became the first player in franchise history to post a 30-homer, 30-steal season.
Despite Ellsbury’s phenomenal season, however, general manager Ben Cherington said both parties only discussed a one-year deal during negotiations.
In addition to locking up Ellsbury, the Red Sox also reached agreements with Mike Aviles, Jarrod Saltalamacchia, Franklin Morales and Ryan Sweeney in recent days to avoid arbitration.
The last time the Red Sox went to arbitration occurred during Dan Duquette‘s time as general manager in 2002, when the Red Sox and former right-handed pitcher Rolando Arrojo couldn’t avoid the process.